My brain and I have been at odds lately.

The Fifth Coin, due to be finished in May, then August, then September and now it’s a hail mary to finish before NaNoWriMo (and hey, I can slide a week into November if I have to because NaNo only takes me 3 weeks)…well, you see where this is going. I want to finish the book, but I sit down to work and I can’t make myself eek out words.

This is generally how the conversation goes:

Me: Let’s go. 1k words to write before school gets out. We have 6 hours!

Brain: I’m not typing anything before a complete breakfast and hot beverage, Lady.

Me: I’ve prepared your offerings. Let’s type while we munch.

Brain: Meh. I can’t possibly work on a story without clearing out all the Facebook notifications and emails. It’s like you don’t know me at all.

Me: *groan* Fine. But then we work. 4 hours is plenty of time to make the goal.

Brain: This goal thing in really stressing me out. I can’t possibly work in such a limited window.

Me: 3 hours is so much time. Come on. Focus. FFS, will you stop checking Facebook??

Brain: I’ll give you a sentence. Get off my back already. I need to tweet about your meager progress. Pathetic.

Me: It’s all your fault.

Brain: I can’t work under this stress. That’s it. I quit.

I have the time, the want, but the motivation has been lacking. When I reached out to the Facebook community for help, because that’s where brain has been hanging out anyway, I expected more platitudes and prayers. Someone gave me a link to Gretchin Rubin’s The Four Tendencies quiz.

Self-help ranks at the bottom of my “to read” pile. Always has. Always will. The short quiz labeled me as a Rebel. A rebel, according to her analysis, says

“I do what I want, in my own way. If you try to make me do something—even if I try to make myself do something—I’m less likely to do it.”

Truer words have never been spoken about me. I hate having a full calendar, can’t stand “To Do” lists, and apparently, even though I’ve wanted to write this book my whole life, now that I gave myself a plan and a schedule I don’t want to stick to it. The schedule is too binding. I’m suffocating. Hey, Brain. I’ve got your number now.

The rebel brain conundrum prevents me from doing the thing I want because I’ve told myself to do it.

Seriously, WTF, right?

Bottom line: Book still languishing, I’m miserable that I can’t finish it. I make more time to do it, and still, it’s not getting done because I don’t want to do it at that time in that way.

Solution? Let the deadlines go and give myself permission to not work on the book. For most people, this may seem counterintuitive, but my brain really likes the freedom. And fuck Grammarly too. All these rules are killing my creativity!

This post has been brought to you by removal of all rules and conventions. Thank you for your understanding.

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